It’s finally here! A new blogathon! I missed them so much! This one is pretty original because, today, I won’t talk to you about one of my favourite movies, but about one of my favourite TV show episodes for The Favourite TV Show Episode Blogathon hosted by A Shroud of Thoughts. For the occasion, I chose an episode from one of my very favourite classic TV shows: The Donna Reed Show. If you have read my tribute to Donna Reed, Donna Reed: What a Star!, you know how much I love this actress and this TV show as well.
Rated 9,0/10 on IMDB, “The Caravan” is, in my opinion, one of the funniest episodes of The Donna Reed Show. If you haven’t seen it yet, you’re in for a treat and a good laugh! Summer vacations are coming and the Stones (Donna, Alex, Jeff, and Mary) have to plan their vacations. The only problem is that Jeff, Alex, and Mary want to do all different things. Donna is the only one who doesn’t really mind. So, to make it fair, they decide that Donna will be the one who will be in charge of the vacations and have the last word on it. Donna is not really enthusiastic, but she’s ready to try her best to make everybody happy. The next day, Donna is back with a surprise: a big camping car rented for a beautiful road trip across the USA. The children and the husband are not very convinced because, as Alex says, “It’s so big!” but after visiting the place, a real rolling house, they realized that it might be fun. So, here they go, as a happy family, with their sunglasses on their noses. Only, troubles won’t make long happen, especially for Donna to whom it’s not really a vacation because she has to cook and clean everything all the time.
The Caravan is one of the best Donna Reed Show‘s episodes for many reasons. It’s, first, one of the episodes with the best gags. Each character (except maybe Mary) has his funny moment. My favourite one is when Alex (Carl Betz) can’t go out of his sleeping bag in the morning because the zipper is stuck. So, Donna asks to a mechanic to help him and the poor Alex is so desperate. Carl Betz makes some of his best facial expressions here. The other great touch of fun in this episode is Donna’s narration, especially when she explains that life in a camping car is not as easy as it seems: “Have you ever try cooking at 50 miles an hour? Well, take my word for it, it presents a few problems, especially when the floor is going one way and the spaghetti another.” You can imagine what happens with the spaghetti…
What I also like about The Caravan is its burlesque touch. Many lines in this film are funny, but there are also some hilarious physical gags: when Jeff falls off his chair, when Donna tries to close the closets or tries to cook, etc. Of course, the joyful music also helps to set the tone. Another of my favourite moments is when Mary decides to organise a party… in the caravan. She only invites 2 persons (2 boys), but her parents and her brother are also here so they are a little tight in this camping car that seems to be big from the outside, but that is not that spacious once inside. One more time, during this scene, Donna has a bad experience with her cooking. But this time, a cake is involved
I also love this episode because it shows us the importance of learning to live with each other even if it’s not always easy. And, as always, Donna Stone is the perfect mother who cares so much for her children and her husband’s happiness. Donna Reed was really the perfect actress to play this role, just like the other actors (Carl Betz, Paul Petersen, and Shelly Fabares). They form a memorable fictional family.
So, now that you know the main reasons why you MUST see this episode, you can now watch it! You’ll love it.
Don’t forget to read the other entries for the Favourite TV Show Episode Blogathon!